The Julio-Claudians

The Julio-Claudians are recognised as the first dynasty of Roman Emperors, although they never actually took the name ‘Emperor’. Instead they took the title of ‘Princeps’ (simply meaning First Citizen) and held power through a clever system of political primacy, now called the Principate that was first conceived and instituted by Augustus.

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                    FAMILY TREE OF THE JULIO-CLAUDIANS

Printable Version of Family Tree

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HTML text for Copying Family Tree

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As can be seen from the family tree above, the Julio-Claudian emperors were all interrelated, either by direct descent or by marriage. They traced their ancestry on one side from the patrician ‘gens Julia’ ( through Augustus, Julius Caesar’s grand nephew and adopted son) and also from the prominent patrician ‘gens Claudia’ (through the Empress Livia’s first husband, Tiberius Claudius Nero – the father of  the future Emperor Tiberius). The Claudians were a very prominent old patrician family with a long history of holding high public office in the time of the Republic . Claudius, Caligula and Nero could also claim descent from Mark Antony and Octavia (Augustus’s sister).

 

 

 

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